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Khibiny Mountains

Coordinates: 67°44.1′N 33°43.6′E / 67.7350°N 33.7267°E / 67.7350; 33.7267
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Khibiny Mountains
Хиби́ны / Umptek
Khibins in winter
Highest point
Elevation1,201 m (3,940 ft)
Coordinates67°43′21″N 33°28′06″E / 67.72250°N 33.46833°E / 67.72250; 33.46833
Area1,300 km2 (500 sq mi)
Khibiny Mountains is located in Murmansk Oblast
Khibiny Mountains
Khibiny Mountains
Location in Murmansk Oblast, Russia
RegionKola Peninsula
Range coordinates67°44.1′N 33°43.6′E / 67.7350°N 33.7267°E / 67.7350; 33.7267

The Khibiny Mountains (Russian: Хиби́ны [xʲɪˈbʲinɨ]; Kildin Sami: Umptek)[1] is one of the two main mountain ranges of the Kola Peninsula, Russia, within the Arctic Circle, located between Imandra and Umbozero lakes. The range is also known as Khibiny Massif, Khibinsky Mountains, Khibinsky Tundras, Khibins or Khibiny. The Khibiny National Park was set up in 2018.


Khibiny in autumn
Clear water lake in Khibiny

The Khibiny Massif are the highest mountains of the Kola Peninsula, a large peninsula extending from northern Russia into the Barents and White seas. The total land area of the peninsula is approximately 100,000 square kilometres (39,000 sq mi). It is rich in minerals due to the removal of a layer of soil during the last ice age.[2]

The Khibiny Massif is of oval shape of about 1,300 km2. and occupies the central part of the peninsula at a relative elevation of 900–1000 m above the surrounding plain. The mountains are not particularly high; the two highest peaks are the Yudychvumchorr, which stands 1,201 metres (3,940 ft), and the Chasnachorr, which stands 1,191 metres (3,907 ft).[3] The average elevation is 1,116 metres (3,661 ft).[4] The mountains form the shape of a horseshoe topped by a high plateau, drained by a series of deep canyons. The peaks are of plateau type, with steep slopes, with glaciers, icefields and snowfields in some places. The overall terrain is alpine tundra.

The second, and similar mountain range of the Kola Peninsula, the Lovozero Tundras, is located about 5 km east from the easternmost point of Khibiny, separated from it by Lake Umbozero.[2]

The Khibiny range is extremely rich in minerals, mainly apatite and nepheline ores. 477 valid minerals have been reported and 108 of those are type localities or minerals first described in the Khibiny.[5] The range is also seismically active.

Khibiny mountains are mostly uninhabited, except for one of the world's richest mineral quarries. One of the minerals discovered there is reported to have a potential as a nuclear waste radioactivity absorbent.[6] By the foot of the massif the cities of Apatity and Kirovsk are situated.


Khibiny have an Arctic-moderate climate, with an average winter temperature of −5 °C (23 °F). However, the temperature can potentially drop to −30 °C (−22 °F) during the night. The Gulf Stream, which brings warmer water to the Kolsky Peninsula from the north, moderates the climate, making it slightly warmer than other Arctic regions.[3]

Toponyms in Khibins[edit]

A summer night in the Khibiny


  1. ^ Ферсман А. Е. (1960). Путешествия за камнем. М.: Издательство Академии наук СССР.
  2. ^ a b "Mineral Number 27-4". Archived from the original on 2008-04-03. Retrieved 2009-02-16.
  3. ^ a b "Khibinsky Mountains". Retrieved 2009-02-16.
  4. ^ "The Khibiny (Khibinsky tundras)". Archived from the original on 2007-09-28. Retrieved 2009-02-16.
  5. ^ http://www.mindat.org/loc-2680.html Khibiny Massif, Kola Peninsula, Murmanskaja Oblast', Northern Region, Russia, Mindat.org
  6. ^ "Safe Nuclear Dump discovered- April 24, 2008". Retrieved 2009-02-16.

External links[edit]